Bay Area real estate is so hot, some people shop from the air

Our housing market has jumped a new shark and this latest twist on the real estate game is so far out of our shopping league, we’re still reeling from the shock that it’s true. 

Get this—one can now shop for local homes from the air. 

Local CBS affiliate KPIX reports that high end real estate agents are taking clients aboard actual airplanes for flyover house showings. Who needs interior staging when a potential buyer can scope out the whole property from the clouds? 

“They don’t know if they want to be in L.A. or the San Francisco Bay Area, or elsewhere—we really are selling the area, not just the home,” explains CEO and General Counsel of DeLeon Realty Michael Repka. DeLeon Realty is the first local company to invest in an actual airplane to show their clients around. 

Repka’s working on adding a pilot’s license to his real estate license so he won’t have to lug an extra pilot along as he showcases his properties. “It will make it an even more intimate experience for our clients because I’ll be able to do the narration with them while I’m flying the plane at the same time,” he explained to KPIX. 

Catering to a mostly international clientele from China, India and Dubai, Repka makes regular use of his home-sale flybys. He was inspired by real estate agents in China who have used airplane showings for the past few years. 

This sky-high idea is taking off—literally. Justin Fichelson from Bravo TV’s Million Dollar Listing now offers helicopter tours to clients interested in certain neighborhoods. “Everyone has these big lots and backyards that you just can’t see from the street,” said Fichelson. “Frankly, on Atherton Avenue, a lot of the houses you can’t even see from the street so seeing it from the air it really puts it into perspective.”

Ed Baalbaki is considering purchasing a $39 million home and took a helicopter tour of his potential future neighborhood and mansion. “By being in the air you get to see pretty much everything around you, which normally you don’t get to see when you just walk into a house like this, and you don’t know,” air-shopper Baalbaki told KPIX. “So I think it was a big, big help to do that.”

Anyone else suddenly plotting to pretend to be a billionaire in search of a home just to score a free helicopter ride? 

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